Thank you, Lord For . . .

               – Thank you, Lord For . . . – (cont)

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My next ‘Thank you, Lord’ is a bit different than the ones before. (1*) (2*) It’s not about Gods fatherly care during my unplanned pregnancy. It’s about my brain damaging illness called encephalitis I endured in 1990. I thank God, through all these years, how He planned a particular day to occur. A very tough day, yes, but God knows how thankful I am for the way He started this life changing ordeal in the most caring way.

I’ll now show most of the first post I shared a while back that, Lord willing, will be in that first chapter of my next book. At the end you will understand more why I ‘Thank you, Lord’ fits right in.

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– God’s Timing is Perfect –

My very first journal from years past will begin to explain.
Note – This writing was done years ago after only two of our four children were born.

August 14, 1991
This one day of writing could take up to ninety-nine-million pages but I will try to shorten it. Cassie is now four, and Trina is almost fourteen months old. Hubby is twenty-seven and I am twenty-four. Lord, thank You that we are all still together. This year – oh, this year. The main dealing this last year has been about my physical and mental problem. Herpes Simplex Encephalitis Meningitis, an acute inflammation of the brain. Five or six weeks, total, in two hospitals. About three weeks in each. I thank God how He had me where I needed to be when I had my seizure…

Now let me explain. There was so much snow where our apartment was on that winter day in 1990. I had to take my baby in for her six-month check-up the next day, but being that it was a fifteen- to twenty-minute drive away, I felt it best that my kids and I just spend that night at my parents’ house, since they were only a few minutes from the doctor’s office. A much shorter and safer drive indeed. I don’t recall spending the night there even once after getting married a few years before this day, but that one night was a must.
The following morning, I enjoyed chatting with my mom, as she so easily showed how much she loved being a grandma. My older sister, whom I rarely ever saw, stopped in for a few minutes to get something. it was great gabbing a few minutes with her as well.
“I’ll just change Trina’s diaper right now before the girls and I leave,” I told my sister and mom as I was on my knees, leaning over Trina, putting a new diaper on her.

But something happened. Totally unexpected, out of the blue, I was suddenly hit with a seizure. I was told later that I had began shaking, and collapsed on the floor while biting my tongue. I threw up a bit as well, so I was told. My life-changing event hit me right then and there that snowy afternoon. My mom took over the girls while Janis came over to see what was happening to me. She knew I was having a seizure and that calling 911 was a must. I have no recollection of any of that. The next thing I do remember, though, is feeling totally confused when I woke up.

“What’s going on?” I’m sure I tried to ask while thinking a mile a minute.

Why are these two strange men lifting me up and putting me on this—this board thing? Who are those ladies looking at me? And what about those really little people? Why are these big guys taking me out of this house? Whose house is it anyway? And why are they putting me, lying down, into this big weird car?

I had absolutely no idea what was going on. What I did know was how odd it all felt. To this day I can still picture it all and feel it as if it was last week. (and to this day my eyes still get a bit damp when pondering on what it was like.)

I, again, must have fallen asleep, for the next thing I remember was waking up, lying on my back, with more strangers looking at me but now inside this totally odd building. You’re right, a hospital.

Even more strangers looking at me. What are all these things sticking into me? What in the world is going on?

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So, again, the reason I’m sharing this again is to share how thankful I always amI just want to share what that difficult time in this, literally, mind-changing ordeal, showed me. I showed me . . .

Gods timing is perfect

I mean think about it. Being a stay-at-home mom, a majority of the time I did just that; stayed at home. What if there was no doctor’s appointment? Chances are the three of us would have been in the apartment alone.
What if the snow wasn’t there? Most likely we still would have been at home. Or worse yet, in the car driving, or perhaps in a store with strangers all around.
But God had plans, and the timing of His plans couldn’t have been better. He had reasons for me scheduling my baby’s check-up appointment for that snowy day, causing me to then be at my parent’s house.

It is obvious God knew to position me at my parents home at the perfect time. Why do I say this? My sister who I rarely ever saw was – get ready for this – a respiratory therapist at that hospital! And it turns out, my other sister came to the house before I left. And guess what, she too worked at that hospital as a respiratory technician. I have no doubt that my sisters helped ensure that I received quality treatment. My mom, bless her heart, was the perfect one to care for my girls with all this going on as I was taken away.

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God sure knew what He was doing and who to have where and when. God’s timing for it all was down-right perfect. God knew He would put me though one big trial but in the best way possible.

I pray you can see, as obvious as I do, that God, was in charge. God still hears me often think Thank you, Lord, for holding me tight at the perfect time.

1*  – Part 1 

2* – Part 2

 

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.

 

 

1 Reason Why Melted Ice Cream Reminds Me of God

  1 Reason Why Melted Ice Cream Reminds Me of God

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Occasionally, something happens that I just can’t hold back from sharing. In each story, there’s usually a part that shows God’s timing is perfect.

One day four years ago, back when our budget was a bit too tight, I tried to get back into house cleaning as I had done years earlier.

“Oh, great,”  I willingly but not so energetically thought, “Once again I’ll somehow get my name out to find new customers.” Not. Fun. 

While I was doing all I could to connect to possible customers, God was hearing me often ask for His guidance in how to connect with who.

About one week after I started giving it my all, one fall windy evening something took place. As I was pushing my grocery cart with four filled-to-the-brim bags to my car, I saw something a bit odd: a tow truck behind someone’s car parked in the disable spot. The tow truck driver was talking to an elderly lady. I slowly walked by, hoping to hear what was going on.

“I can’t get your car to start,” said the tow truck driver, “Where would you like me to tow it?”

“Oh, my! I don’t know what to do,” was one sad elderly ladies answer, “Just tow it to my place and tomorrow I’ll have to try to figure out what I’ll do next.”

‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you’, one of my favorite verses, came to mind. I began pondering.

One thought came to mind while trying to ignore the fact that the ice cream in one of my bags was melting.

“Um . . . excuse me but I couldn’t help but hear what the problem is. I have a suggestion.”

“Please, tell us!”  they both replied.

“Right across the street,” I said while pointing, “is the auto repair place I take my car. I know them well. They are closed now but how about you tow the car there, we both leave a note, and in the morning talk to them about your car. I’ll also offer to take you and your food to where you were headed, assuming it’s close by.”

Both mouths dropped.

“And if you have no way to get it after it’s fixed, maybe I can take you back to pick your car up.”

“Wow, You mean that? You’ll really help me. You’re an angel!” the elderly lady said. “Oh, thank you so much!”

“That sure sounds good to me,” said the truck driver. And off we went.

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After dropping the car off, getting her and her food in my car, we both chit chatted a mile a minute as I took her only a few miles to her place.

“Can’t wait to see her face when she sees my plans,” God must have been thinking, because it turned out this dear lady lived at a retirement apartment complex. No way was I going to let her carry all her stuff up to the 4th level.  As I walked into that building, seeing a few elderly people walking around, one even needing a walker, a thought began to form.

Hmmm – I bet people here could sure use someone to clean their places. I just might look into this.

I asked the lady her thoughts about that while in the elevator.

“There sure are people who would love for you to do that. I know you’ll get quite a few.” 

That next day, when picking her up to go get her car, I had a poster all ready to pin up in the main office’s wall, informing those living there about my cleaning service. That evening I got my first of many calls!

God must have been grinning each time I answered the phone those first few days. Why?  Because I kept thinking that God’s timing of me coming out of that store was perfect, and that helping that dear older lady was far more important than keeping some ice cream from melting.

To this day, each time I see ice cream melting, guess what I think about. I’d love to hear of a certain person, place, or thing that, when ever you see it, it makes you think of a certain time. Come on. I bet we all have one. Tell me!  Tell me !

 

The Door and the New Me

               – The Door and the New Me –

 

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There has to be a place or thing in everyone’s life that stands out. I’m not necessarily talking about a place where some major happening occurred, but one that holds a special spot in your heart. Let me explain what I mean.

My front door. Yep. The front door of my home in Normandy Park, Washington, where I grew up, really stood out. In the sixteen years I lived there, I’m sure I opened and closed that door a million times.  However, the last few years living there, about a handful of times I walked out of that house one way, only to come back different. Not that the door was different, but I was different. Once home, opening that door sort of symbolized opening up this new thing about me to my family.

The first time that happened was when I was eighteen. I was being picked up by my best friend, on our way to a Christian camp. I opened that door and left, thinking about many things. Having just graduated from high school, and having just had a tougher than normal summer, I sure was confused with life ahead. What college route to take, when to get a decent job, and how to deal with family problems going on were all heavy on my mind as I shut that front door as I left. But more so was that lack of peace in my own heart, confused about the God I grew up with and the God I had been hearing about the last few months. This Christian camp I was going to with a friend, I hoped, could answer my questions.

When I was dropped off at my home five days later, I walked up to that front door thinking, “First time I’m opening this door understanding what ‘born again’ and ‘being saved’ really means.” To make a long story short, at that camp God opened my eyes to what being a true believer really meant. No more trusting my own beliefs; no more following the traditions of what I grew up believing, or my own attempts at being ‘holy.’ One day at that camp, things finally made sense. Or, should I say, one day at that camp, Christ opened my eyes and my heart, showing me what saving grace and faith really meant. He was my new Father and I was His child. AMEN!

When I walked up to that front door, I knew I was still a sinner, but now a forgiven sinner who hated her sin. Today, thirty-three years later, I still remember feeling God’s love and presence when I opened that door.

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I was entering my house as happy as could be, but also a bit nervous, knowing that once that door opened, I would be the only one in my home claiming this ‘born again’ title. An awkward feeling, indeed.

Thankfully, I had Christ as my constant companion while turning that knob, no matter what I was going to face.

 

Why am I sharing this? Because the next time I write I’ll talk about the opening of that front door a year later to a different new me. That new me has already been introduced in my last few posts which is what my soon-to-be published book, God and My Pillow, is about. (1*) 

I am eager to know if any of you can picture a certain place or thing that stands out. Could it be a door for you, as well? How about a car, or a stuffed animal? If something comes to mind, please share. What or where it is would be good enough, or, better yet, a simple reason as to why it’s special to you. I look forward to reading.

 

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.